St. John’s, Antigua – World Poker Exchange today announced plans to partner with Autumn Light Media, L.L.C. to produce the second annual London Open poker tournament. Referred to by Bravo TV as „The Wimbledon of British poker,“ the one-of-a-kind signature lifestyle poker tournament will again be held in the United Kingdom, in one of the dynamic city’s most renown historic properties, the Whitehall Palace on September 22-27th. CEO of the International Poker Federation, Thomas Kremser, will be the event’s tournament director.
The World Poker Exchange London Open 2005, attracted 140 of the poker world’s finest players who competed for a guaranteed $ 2 million prize pot. Celebrities from both sides of the pond also participated in the multiple-day event, with such Hollywood favorites as the voluptuous Jennifer Tilly, Mimi Rogers and Sex in the City’s perpetually charming Willie Garson giving the pros a literal run for the money. For months afterwards, poker’s largest names continued singing London Open praises. Bluff Magazine, for example, noted that pro player Antonio Esfandiari extended his thanks to World Poker Exchange „for putting together what may have been the greatest tournament in the history of poker tournaments to date.“ This year, the $ 10k buy-in tournament is expected to draw 300 players, driving the estimated pot to $ 3 million. As in last year, on-line qualifying tournaments will be exclusively held at Worldpx.com, and are expected to begin in June.
The inaugural offering of the World Poker Exchange London Open established new ground for live poker tournaments and raised the stakes on tournament profiles by offering distinctive lifestyle wrap-around events for its players and their guests, like back stage passes to „The Producers“ and private tours of the royal Palace. The London Open kicked off with an invitation only party for 1,400 attendees with legendary Grace Jones and UK rock band, Dirty Vegas both performing. Additionally, the tournament was housed in a landmark historical building on the River Thames and was captured by Bravo TV, which produced a prime time television special surrounding the overall event.
„The London Open 2005 showed the poker community just how much more a high stakes poker tournament can be beyond just playing cards and going home. It embodied the lifestyle of a professional poker player and celebrated the spirit of this great game. We will further build upon last year’s event and once again offer the best poker tournament in Europe,“ says Haden Ware, Managing Director of World Poker Exchange.
„Autumn Light Media looks forward to once again producing this unique, high-profile event in conjunction with World Poker Exchange. We have already received interest from multiple television outlets that would like to cover the event and have once again secured a truly impressive and inspiring location within which to hold the tournament. Inigo Jones‘ Palladian styled 1622 Banqueting House is the last surviving building of Whitehall Palace, which was once the largest royal palace in Europe and was the primary residence of Henry VIII and Charles I with impressive columns and magnificent ceiling paintings from Sir Peter Paul Rubens. To be sure, the poker tournament bar will once again be raised,“ says John Raczka, President of Autumn Light Media.
„I am delighted to be invited in participating in the London Open. Last year, the London Open took Europe by surprise. However, the resulting word-of-mouth compliments towards the event among North American and European players alike was very impressive. Therefore, I feel the tournament doubling its player count this year is very likely,“ says London Open tournament director, Thomas Kremser.
While more event details will be forthcoming, interested players and sponsors are encouraged to consult World Poker Exchange’s web site at http://www.worldpx.com/ for future updates.